Our Story

We invite you to consider joining with this community of learners. It is all for His glory, and for the children’s sake.

Our Story

We invite you to consider joining with this community of learners. It is all for His glory, and for the children’s sake.

If we ask in perplexity, why do so many men and women seem incapable of generous impulse, of reasoned patriotism, of seeing beyond the circle of their own interests, is not the answer, that men are enabled for such things by education?

— CHARLOTTE M. MASON —

If we ask in perplexity, why do so many men and women seem incapable of generous impulse, of reasoned patriotism, of seeing beyond the circle of their own interests, is not the answer, that men are enabled for such things by education?

CHARLOTTE M. MASON

Ambleside-53

Story of founding Ambleside School of Marion

 

In 2016, a spark of inspiration ignited when a group of homeschooling families and members of our church community yearned for a different educational experience for their children. This desire led to conversations with Bill and MaryEllen St. Cyr and Greg Lorden about founding an Ambleside School in Marion, IL. As a former public school teacher who had also homeschooled Charlotte Mason style, I had witnessed the transformative power of a “living education” and was convinced it was the best path not only for my own children but for the children in our community.

 

The turning point came during a family vacation to Key West when I persuaded my husband to tour the Ambleside School of Ocala. What we encountered there left an indelible mark on our hearts—the warm, natural atmosphere, the rich curriculum with beautiful ideas, and the effective teaching methods we witnessed during our tour were nothing short of inspiring. It was during that visit that the dream of founding an Ambleside School in Marion, IL was born.

 

With a dedicated group of founding families by our side, eager to help the school take root, we began hosting Ambleside information meetings. Families who attended our open houses were captivated by what they heard about Ambleside’s curriculum: the use of living books, narration, nature study, music, art, and a system for cultivating good habits, among other things.

 

But Ambleside’s appeal goes beyond the educational framework; it extends to the heart of what matters most. Parents began to recognize that the Ambleside’s philosophy incorporates biblical truth, providing unwavering support for families as they strive to raise children who love the Lord with all their hearts. Here are some key aspects of the support Ambleside Schools offer:

 

Biblical Foundation: Ambleside Schools embrace a Christian worldview, weaving biblical truth into every aspect of their educational philosophy. This holistic approach enables students to see the seamless connection between faith and learning, nurturing a deep and enduring spiritual foundation.

 

Respect for the Child as a Person: Ambleside Schools honor each child’s uniqueness, understanding that they are created in the image of God. Children, with their innate curiosity and potential, can lose interest in learning when exposed to dull worksheets and textbooks. Ambleside teachers lay out a sumptuous and intellectually stimulating feast of ideas. The children eagerly partake, nourishing their minds, growing in knowledge, and craving even more.

 

Relationship-Centered Education: At Ambleside, education is seen as “the science of relations,” acknowledging that children possess the innate capacity to make meaningful connections with knowledge and experiences. This approach empowers students to develop a lifelong love for learning and a profound understanding of the world around them.

 

Awe and Wonder: Ambleside Schools seek to cultivate a sense of awe and wonder in students, encouraging them to marvel at the intricacies of creation as a reflection of God’s handiwork. Through nature study, exposure to the arts, and exploration of great literature and ideas, students are inspired to view the world with fresh eyes.

 

In summary, Ambleside Schools not only provide an exceptional education but also nurture the spiritual, intellectual, and emotional growth of each child. They are a beacon of light, where faith and learning intertwine seamlessly, fostering a deep love for the Lord and a lifelong passion for learning. We are continually amazed at how the Ambleside philosophy of education draws families to Ambleside School of Marion, year after year. Although our family has relocated to Florida, we miss the beloved school community and will continue to provide support as the Lord leads. We invite you to join the Ambleside School of Marion- a school that is for the children’s sake and for His glory.

 

Josh and Tara Zettler
Founders